Wednesday, September 14, 2011

2 in 1 Novellas: Viper's Kiss and Daring

It's that time again! I have 2 novellas for review today. First up is:

Viper's Kiss

Author: Shannon Curtis
Publisher: Carina Press (July 2011)

Librarian Maggie Kincaid yearns for excitement—but being accused of espionage is not what she had in mind. Wanted by the police, the FBI and the criminal element, Maggie goes on the run—and runs straight into sexy Luke Fletcher. Unfortunately, when Luke pulls out the handcuffs, it's not because he has something kinky in mind...
Security expert Luke is intent on seeing the murderous spy known only as Viper brought to justice. The un-spy-like behavior of his fugitive makes him suspect he's apprehended the wrong woman. Just as they give in to lust, new evidence convinces Luke that Maggie's not as innocent as she claims to be.
Devastated by Luke's inability to trust her, Maggie runs again. She's determined to clear her name, and if that means tracking down a notorious spy even Interpol can't seem to locate, then that's exactly what she'll do...
Viper's Kiss involves a librarian who is accused of being a spy and stealing secret technology. While I liked the overall story idea, I'm not sure this one really worked for me. I know I would have liked this one had it been a bit longer and there was more time to get t know both Maggie and Luke. Their relationship just seemed forced and not believable. I didn't really like Maggie or Luke. Maggie kept contradicting herself and that got annoying. First, she says she won't sleep with someone until she has known them 90 days. Then all of a sudden, she is jumping into bed with Luke after knowing him a few hours. I just didn't see that happening. I mean, there was attraction, but after one kiss, she is giving up her virginity? Then she says she can't imagine life without him, but later tells him she needs to step back and evaluate her feelings.

Luke is kind of a boring hero. Other than his good looks, I didn't see much about him that was likable. He has this gut instinct that tells him Maggie isn't Viper, but he is easily swayed to not trust her by the smallest amount of evidence. I think that he totally over-reacted in the end when Maggie says she wants some space to make sure their relationship is one that can last. Also, for a security expert, he was a bit slow on proving Maggie wasn't the real Viper. The identity of Viper seemed to be something that could be cleared up very easily and that was frustrating for me. As I said, had this been longer and had more back story, I would have liked it more. It's a quick read, so you can judge for yourself.

Next up is Daring

Author: Dee Davis
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

Lara thought working a world away would heal her. Yet volunteering to treat the sick and injured in revolution-torn central Africa can't stop the shattering memories of losing the man she loved. A night with sexy security officer Rafe Winters seems the perfect temporary escape-until insurgents attack her clinic and Rafe becomes her only way to survive . . .

Rafe knows all too well that this beautiful young doctor is the insurgents' real target: Her knowledge of America's espionage system makes her a valuable prize. Helping her flee jeopardizes his hidden agenda-but her unexpected trust in him sparks a desire to protect her that he can't ignore. Now as their merciless pursuers close in, Rafe and Lara's only chance for escape will put everything they've sworn to protect-and their new found love-on the line . . . 

This novella is one of the reasons that I really dislike reading a series out of order.  I haven't read any of the preceding books to this novella, so I don't know any of the back story about the organization A-Tac or the peripheral characters that show up in the book. I had the feeling of walking into the theater halfway through a movie and jsut couldn't catch up.

Having said that, Daring was just OK for me.  I think if I had more back story for both Lara and Rafe I would have liked both of them more than I did. I didn't get the sense that I knew either charter enough to like either of them.  The action in the story was engaging and I liked the question "Is Rafe a good guy or not?", but beyond that the story felt flat.  The romance just seemed too forced and wasn't believable.  

I am intrigued enough to go back and read the books preceding this novella.  Maybe I'll come to appreciate it more if I do. 


No comments: